Visualizing the entire fretboard
This thread covers how to, finally & once-and-for-all, 'see' the fretboard & all its notes in your head -- not just those literal comfort-zones you've played-within over the years!
For the key of C, it's broken-down here into 4-sections:
- Section 1: vertical C-major scale / 6 strings
- Section 2: arpeggios of C-major scale / 6 strings
- Section 3: horizontal C-major scale / 2 strings
- Section 4: triads of C-major scale / 3-strings
How to practice these exercises
Your central task, zooming all the way out is, associating: (a) names of all the notes (A, G, C, etc) with (b) the frets on the fretboard.
It's straight-forward -- but not necessarily easy..
But, if you want a way that actually works, that you won't forget about 3 years from now, these are the '3 secret ingredients'... although, maybe just secret ingredients in a time of 'secret ingredients'..
For each exercise here,
- Speak the note names out loud as you play
- Play all phrases with a metronome (benchmark: 110bpm)
- Memorize the lines
By speaking the note names while you play, your brain will associate: (a) the note name and (b) the fret... then, by using a metronome, the time limit will kick your rear-end, forcing you to learn faster albeit less pleasantly.
Of course, no one's watching over your shoulder, seeing if you actually do these^ things, but if you want to leave purgatory and finally know the fretboard, put yourself through a few weeks of the 'woodshed'! You won't have to feel as 'stuck' on the fretboard, and worse yet -- feel the pangs of not goin' going through this guide from head-to-toe :)
Key of C: Exercise 1
The first exercise involves the C-major scale, played the notes vertically along the entire fretboard.
To get started, make sure to have a metronome handy -- metronomes can easily be downloaded on smartphones, so there's no excuse!
Next, here's a reference diagram, meant to tell you what the note names are... and therefore what to recite out load as you play..
Finally, here's the exercise itself.
Find a 'base' tempo, where you're able to recite the note names aloud as you play without missing beats or misnaming notes.. with a slow enough tempo, anyone can play anything.. don't worry if your base tempo is slow! It's a place to start. Over time, you can increase the metronome's tempo as you build comfort.
Estimated time: 10 hrs